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  #1  
Old 22 Dec 16, 07:11
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End of the Year Booklists

I always love Reading Lists and Booklists.
This one in particular:

THE WAR ON THE ROCKS 2016 HOLIDAY READING LIST,

http://warontherocks.com/2016/12/the...-reading-list/

took my fancy end of December 2016 because of its diversity: fiction and non-fiction, classics and new plus some titels I didn't see coming

Happy Seasonal Reading.
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  #2  
Old 22 Dec 16, 08:57
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Interesting list. I have already read a few, but also added a few to my reading list...

So many books, yet so little time in one's life...
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  #3  
Old 22 Dec 16, 15:23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt AFB View Post
Interesting list. I have already read a few, but also added a few to my reading list...

So many books, yet so little time in one's life...
That is a very recognizable problem.
One solution I apply is to have a closer look at those that are recommended several times in the list, books that appear twice so to speak
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Old 22 Dec 16, 15:53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Major Sennef View Post
That is a very recognizable problem.
One solution I apply is to have a closer look at those that are recommended several times in the list, books that appear twice so to speak
Applying the above criterium, I would end up with the following books:

War by Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft by Robert D. Blackwell and Jennifer M. Harris.
We are now entering a period of dominantly geo-economic competition, and this book is as good an introduction to the required mindsets and a timely reminder of our own lost wisdom about and potential for geo-economic strategy.*

World Order by Henry Kissinger.
Not a new book but never more relevant given the discussions about the changing world order. Focusing on regional orders and how system level changes over history have brought us some of the great world events, Kissinger, in a way only this grand strategist can, lays out the world and how to think about it.


The same theme, the fall of France in 1940, appears twice in this list, albeit in two different books, so perhaps reason to look a bit deeper into it.

To Lose a Battle: France, 1940 by Alistair Horne.
An old but engrossing book, and a powerful reflection on the influence of turbulent politics and the sapping of military spirit, and a personal favorite of mine, MS.

Strange Victory: Hitler’s Conquest of France by Ernest May.
I hear Marc Bloch's crystal clear 'Strange Defeat' resonate here. Another great sifting of theories, why France capitulated so quickly in World War II — a careful analysis of tactical and strategic mistakes, shrewdly exploited by the Wehrmacht.* A great education in intelligence analysis and application, as well as innovation.


Finally two books that took my fancy because they stand out of all the other books about strategy and international politics and seem to offer wider vistas.


The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction by Neil Gaiman.
Strategies are stories. Author August Cole has called war “narrative by other means,” scholar Yuval Harari reminds us societies require myths to thrive in competition and survive in conflict, and strategist Lawrence Freedman finished his book Strategy: A History by highlighting the importance of stories. In my own “view from the cheap seats,” I’ve written to amplify this idea, that creating an accepted narrative is central to success at war: Story-making is strategy-making. And few make stories as well as British author Neil Gaiman. In this case, he has plied his fiction skill in the non-fiction world, and the book brims with unexpected lessons for those engaged in the everyday art and study of persuasion, threats, or violence visited upon other people (or nations).

Progress: Ten Reasons to Look Forward to the Future by Johan Norberg.
We are relentlessly inundated with stories of death, despair, and destruction **— an onslaught that would make it hard for even the most optimistic among us to brave.* And yet, as Norberg demonstrates meticulously, there is a pronounced disconnect between perceptions of the human condition and the realities thereof.* His account serves as a powerful antidote both to misguided nostalgia for the past and inordinate fear about the future.
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Old 26 Dec 16, 03:03
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What to read in order to understand 2017

While I'm at it I may as well add this list:

https://medium.com/@theonlytoby/what...1b5#.m81yc0trn
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Old 26 Dec 16, 11:05
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Major Sennef View Post
The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction by Neil Gaiman.
Strategies are stories. Author August Cole has called war “narrative by other means,” scholar Yuval Harari reminds us societies require myths to thrive in competition and survive in conflict, and strategist Lawrence Freedman finished his book Strategy: A History by highlighting the importance of stories. In my own “view from the cheap seats,” I’ve written to amplify this idea, that creating an accepted narrative is central to success at war: Story-making is strategy-making. And few make stories as well as British author Neil Gaiman. In this case, he has plied his fiction skill in the non-fiction world, and the book brims with unexpected lessons for those engaged in the everyday art and study of persuasion, threats, or violence visited upon other people (or nations).
I'm a fan of Neil Gaiman and he's an author whose new works I buy as they're released and have no problem recommending to others. However this title I have some reservations about as it's a very mixed bag. As an overview of his career, I was prepared for some unevenness. What I found that stuck out was the repetition. The same anecdotes crop up repeatedly in different pieces with small changes. I often felt I was rereading passages when it was just Gaiman retelling the same story in a different piece of writing. There are some gems in here but overall I'd say it was one of his weaker books which would have benefited from stronger editing and a better selection of material.
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Old 17 Jan 17, 09:27
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President Obama

Books Obama read during his White House years.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/16/b...?smid=fb-share

Some titles are surprising like the Chinese Sci-fi series 'The Three Body Problem' which AFAIK till recently was not even available in the USA. However Mr. Obama comes up with a pretty good reason why he read them

https://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/11/b...hed-in-us.html
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Old 19 Jan 17, 06:59
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As a follow-up on the previous post:

http://forreadingaddicts.co.uk/polls...esidency/16434
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Old 26 Apr 17, 18:13
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Stavridids reading list

Stavridids reading list

Must have been a hell of an intellectual atmosphere to work at EUCOM

https://warontherocks.com/2017/04/re...e-suggestions/
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